I have heard some sisters from other communities say before that they would never be allowed to just go out to dinner... some even have it in their rule. Not that it's a bad thing to have in your Rule, but it is part of my community's history to be hospitable in this way. While I was in the novitiate a sister taught us Community History and one large part of that was that when our sisters were missioned to a foreign country they always made sure to be available when priests came, especially priests from their home countries, so that they had someone to talk to in their native language, to enjoy a meal with, and to pray with when they arrived. It is so lonely to be in another country without a community and so the sisters were encouraged to always be available, even in the middle of the night to rise and make preparations to welcome one of their fathers.
Well, I was delighted with a visit from this very holy and fatherly priest. So often in our world today priests live alone without much support. Maybe we could all take the time to pray in gratitude for these holy men who have touched our lives, nourished our souls, and given us the grace to respond to God. Maybe we could also pray for those men who have felt abandoned, broken, or alone and have left God's service, that they might know God's abundant love and goodness and, if able, return to His service once again.
Thank you, Lord, for the gift of your holy priests! Send us more! Amen!